The National Museum of African American Music (NMAAM) announces that its previously scheduled grand opening for Labor Day weekend 2020 has been delayed due to ongoing concerns around the coronavirus pandemic. Starting this month, NMAAM will kick off a year-long celebration filled with a variety of digital experiences and limited in-person events.
“We take the health and safety of our staff and guests seriously. Construction of the museum is coming to completion, and although we will be prepared to open in the next couple of months, we won’t do so until we are confident that we can adhere to the recommendations of the CDC and the City of Nashville, to keep our staff and community safe,” said H. Beecher Hicks III, NMAAM President and CEO. “We hope to have a soft opening in the fall, and an incredible celebration sometime mid-next year. More details will be available soon.”
In the meantime, the public will be able to engage and interact with NMAAM through various digital experiences available via the museum’s website and social media channels. The museum is continuing to share the story of the influence and contributions of African Americans on the American soundtrack. The signature From Nothing to Something educational program is now being offered across NMAAM social media platforms, along with other recurring programming such as Sips and Stanzas, the My Music Matters interview series and the Fine Tuning Masterclasses. NMAAM will also soon offer virtual tours of the museum and digital sneak peaks of selected items in its collection of artifacts.
Located in the heart of downtown Nashville as part of the Fifth + Broadway mixed-use development, NMAAM was scheduled to kick-off the grand opening of the full development that includes retail, residential and office spaces. The remainder of the Fifth + Broadway will host its own opening activities allowing tenants to move-in and celebrate at their own pace.
Construction on the 56,000 square foot facility was impacted earlier this spring when COVID-19 concerns halted many local businesses and forced crews to work in limited capacities due to social distancing mandates. Luckily, construction was already far enough along that NMAAM only experienced slight delays and the construction team was able to stay substantially on schedule. NMAAM leadership is pleased that construction of the museum will be complete by September as originally planned.
Upon entering, guests who visit the museum will be immersed in generations of musical history created and inspired by African Americans. NMAAM features seven content galleries—six permanent and one rotating—that chronicle Black musical traditions from the 1600s to the present day. More than 50 genres and sub-genres of American music are explored from spirituals and gospel, to jazz, blues, R&B, hip-hop, and more.
Advance tickets and museum memberships can still be purchased from the NMAAM website. All admission tickets are timed, with tours scheduled every 30 minutes – capacities have been adjusted to permit appropriate social distancing. Guests will be able to select their time slot based upon ticket availability. Guests can also explore becoming a museum member to receive unlimited entry for a year and access to exclusive content and museum discounts. For additional information, please visit the Membership section of the website or call 615-488-3310.
For the latest news and updates on NMAAM’s opening, be sure to follow @TheNMAAM across all social media or visit the official website at BlackMusicMuseum.org.